Highlights

  • Hurricane Ian batters South Carolina as Florida's death toll climbs
  • Rescue work underway in flooded area
  • Pier partially washed away due to raging waters

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Hurricane Ian batters South Carolina as Florida's death toll climbs

As Ian moved across South Carolina, it dropped from a hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone.

A revived Hurricane Ian pounded coastal South Carolina on Friday, ripping apart piers and flooding streets after the ferocious storm caused catastrophic damage in Florida, trapping thousands in their homes and leaving at least 17 people dead.

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement said the deaths included a 22-year-old woman ejected in an ATV rollover Friday because of a road washout and a 71-year-old man who died earlier of head injuries when he fell off a roof while putting up rain shutters. Many of the other deaths were drownings, including that of a 68-year-old woman swept into the ocean by a wave.

Another three people died in Cuba earlier in the week as the storm churned northward. The death toll was expected to increase substantially once emergency officials have an opportunity to search many of the hardest-hit areas.

Ian's center came ashore near Georgetown, South Carolina, with much weaker winds than when it crossed Florida's Gulf Coast on Wednesday as one of the strongest storms to ever hit the U.S. As Ian moved across South Carolina, it dropped from a hurricane to a post-tropical cyclone.

Also Watch| Hurricane Ian: Catastrophic storm swamps hospitals, streets of Florida

Sheets of rain whipped trees and power lines and left many areas on Charleston's downtown peninsula under water. Parts of four piers along the coast, including two at Myrtle Beach, collapsed into the churning waves and washed away. Online cameras showed seawater filling neighbourhoods in Garden City to calf level.

Ian left a broad swath of destruction in Florida, flooding areas on both of its coasts, tearing homes from their slabs, demolishing beachfront businesses and leaving more than 2 million people without power.

Rescue crews piloted boats and waded through riverine streets in Florida after the storm to save thousands of people trapped amid flooded homes and shattered buildings .

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